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A person speaks differently on different occasions (e.g. when chatting with intimate friends or talking to official persons, when delivering a lecture, speaking over the radio or giving a dictation exercise). The choice of a speech style is determined by the situation.

A functional style can be defined as a specific set of patterns into which language means are arranged to transmit information. The classification of functional styles is still an open question in linguistics. There is no universal classification, admitted by everyone.

We would like to mention three well-known classifications.

An intonational functional style – a system of intonation means which is used in a certain situation and serves a definite aim in communication.

Serhiy Myronovych Gaiduchic: five phonetic styles: solemn, scientific business, official business, everyday, and fa­miliar.

Yuriy Oleksandrovych Dubovsky: five styles, criterion – different degrees of formality or, rather, familiarity between the speaker and the listener: informal ordinary, formal neutral, formal offi­cial, informal familiar, and declamatory.

Maryna Oleksiyivna Sokolova:

1. Informational style.

2. Academic style (Scientific).

3. Publicistic style (Oratorial).

4. Declamatory style (Artistic).

5. Conversational style (Familiar).

There are three types of information present in communication, and appropriate intonation:

(a) intellectual information, INFO

(b) emotional and attitudinal information, EMOTION

(c) volitional and desiderative [dɪ'zɪdərətɪv] information. INFLUENCE

All intonational styles include intellectual intonation patterns, because the aim of any kind of intercourse is to communicate or express some intellectual information. The frequency of occurrence and the overall intonational distribution of emotional (or attitudinal) and volitional (or desiderative) pat­terns shape the distinctive features of each style.

Informational/formalstyle – predomi­nant use of intellectual intonation patterns (INFO). Formal discourse where the task of the message sender is to communicate information without giving it any emotional or vo­litional evaluation (radio and television announcers when reading weather fore­casts, news, etc. or in various official situations). It is considered stylistically neutral.

In scientific/academicstyle intellectual and volitional (or desiderative) intonation patterns are also employed (INFO, influence, emotion). University lecturers, school­teachers, or scientists in formal and informal discussions. The speaker's purpose is not only to inform, create new concepts, explain relations between different phe­nomena, but also to direct the listener's attention to the message. The style is objective and precise, but not entirely unemotional.

In declamatory/artisticstyle INFO=EMOTION=INFLUENCE. The speaker tries to appeal simultaneously to the mind, the will and feelings of the listener. Declamatory style is gen­erally acquired by special training and it is used in stage speech, classroom recitation, verse-speaking or in reading aloud fiction.

Publicistic/oratorial style (INFLUENCE, info, emotion) – predominance of volition­al (or desiderative) intonation patterns against the background of intellectual and emotional ones. The general aim – to influence the listener, to convince him that the speaker's interpretation is the only correct one and to make him to accept the point of view expressed in the speech. Publicistic style has features in common with scientific and declamatory styles. Political speech-makers, ra­dio and television commentators, participants of press conferenc­es and interviews, counsel and judges in courts of law, etc.

Familiar/conversationalstyle (EMOTION, info, influence) – English of everyday life. Within a family group and in informal external relationships (close friends or well-acquainted people).

Any style is sel­dom realized in its pure form. Each text is likely to in­clude phonetic characteristics of different styles – overlapping (fusion) of styles. For example, a university lecturer can make use of both scientific style (definitions, presentation of scientific facts) and declamatory style (illustration of these defini­tions and facts).


Listen to extracts 1-5 and find out, which intonational style (informational, academic (scientific), publicistic (oratorial), declamatory (artistic), colloquial) each of them belongs to. Explain your choice in writing.


Date: 2015-12-24; view: 10910

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